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For Immediate Release

EDB Hosting Black, Indigenous, People of Color Economic Event

Santa Rosa,CA | August 06, 2021

The Sonoma County Economic Development Board (EDB) is hosting the second installment of their new signature economic series, Economic Perspectives, on August 11th at 8:00 am. The August event, Economic Perspective: BIPOC Impact, will examine the economic impacts and challenges of Black, indigenous, and people of color (BIPOC) owned businesses featuring keynote speaker Marlene Orozco of the Stanford Latino Entrepreneurship Initiative (SLEI) and a panel of Sonoma County BIPOC business owners.  

Marlene-Orozco-200x267Marlene is the Lead Research Analyst for SLEI at the Stanford Graduate School of Business. The project analyzes data collected nationally from entrepreneurs of all ethnic and racial backgrounds to draw comparisons and highlight unique experiences and impacts of BIPOC-owned businesses. Marlene will be presenting on disparate impacts and pathways for recovery among BIPOC entrepreneurs.

“This really is an EDB first. It will be the first time we welcome a person of color as our keynote researcher and the first time we really take the opportunity to dive into the challenges that persist for BIPOC-owned businesses. With our new Economic Perspectives series, we aim to elevate a multitude of experiences and industries. It is important to look at all aspects of our community to create a healthy and resilient economy,” said Sheba Person-Whitley, Executive Director for the Sonoma County Economic Development Board.

Opening remarks will be given by Sonoma County Board of Supervisor Chair, Lynda Hopkins, followed by a panel of Sonoma County BIPOC business owners moderated by Lorez Baily of Chop’s Teen Club. Panelists included Juan Hernandez of Creser Capital, Malia Anderson of Style by Malia, Osvaldo Jimenez of Noble Folk Ice Cream and Pie Bar, and Teresita Fernández of La Michoacana. 

“Learning where our disparities exist and opportunities we have is a critical step in bringing racial equity to Sonoma County. We can and need to do better in closing that gap which is why racial equity and social justice is a priority goal in the County of Sonoma’s Five Year Strategic Plan,” said Board of Supervisor Chair, Lynda Hopkins. 

Economic Perspective: BIPOC Impact is scheduled for Wednesday, August 11th, at 8:00 am. Registration is free and the event will broadcast live from Zoom and Facebook at More information and registration can be found at


The Sonoma County Economic Development Board is a County agency focused on growing a healthy economy by helping businesses in Sonoma County. They provide confidential, no-cost consulting services to businesses seeking to start, relocate, and grow in Sonoma County.